How Rooibos can protect against UVB exposure and sun damage
South Africa has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world with about 20 000 reported cases every year. However, Rooibos can help to combat this. Prof Wentzel Gelderblom from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology's Institute of Biomedical and Microbial Biotechnology has found that "Once the skin has been exposed to the sun's ultra-violet rays, Rooibos extracts have the ability to remove precancerous damaged cells and also block the onset of inflammation".
The abundance of polyphenols (antioxidants) in Rooibos gives it its restorative power. These compounds are linked with the prevention of various chronic disorders, including skin cancer.
Prof Gelderblom explained that preliminary findings show that Rooibos extracts are more effective during the early stages of skin cancer development as they are able to facilitate the removal of UVB damage cells to delay their progression into a tumour. UVB rays can also burn and damage the skin, especially at high altitudes. In this regard, Prof Gelderblom said that they are developing biomarkers, representing critical biological processes of how Rooibos protects against skin cancer.
Prof Gelderblom says there are still a number of tests that need to be done before an after-sun skincare product is brought to market.
Read more about this research in these articles:
• South Africa - The Good News website: Drink Rooibos in the Sun
• Independent Online: Rooibos tea is a skin cancer protector
• Independent Online: New findings on benefits of Rooibos tea
• Get it Online (Durban edition): Rooibos! Protecting you against UVB exposure
• Randfontein Herald: How Rooibos can protect you against the sun
• SA Breaking News: Rooibos protects skin from the sun
• Vaal Weekblad: This is why you should drink a cuppa right now!
• North West province community newspaper Kormorant: Rooibos can undo sun damage
• Get it Online (Northern KwaZulu-Natal edition): Rooibos protects against the adverse effects of UCB exposure
• Health24.com website: Can Rooibos protect you from the effects of UVB exposure?